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Are wood burning stoves going to be banned?

Recent headlines and media hype misinterpreting the Government’s 2019 Clean Air Strategy have resulted in public confusion regarding stoves and fires.

We hope this page answers some of your questions.
If you have any other questions about the new regulations, please call us on 01225 891469

• Are they banning stoves and fires?
No, not at all. The new legislation states however that all new stoves or fires on sale from 2022 do need to be Ecodesign models.


• Do I have to buy an Ecodesign stove now?
No – Until 2022 we can continue to supply you from the full spectrum of products available. Only from January 2022 will we need to ensure these are Ecodesign models. However, we already have a wide range of Ecodesign models available.
Click here to see our Ecodesign range


• Are they banning the burning of wood or solid fuels?
No - The strategy is that all wood sold for domestic use in volumes of less than 2 cubic metres must have a moisture content of less than 20% by Febuary 2021. Sales of bagged house coal will be phased out by Febuary 2021 and the sale of loose house coal delivered direct to the customer will end by 2023. All manufactured solid fuel will have a 2% maximum sulpher limit and a smoke emission limit of 5g per hour.


• Can I keep using my existing stove?
Yes – The Clean Air Strategy does not say there will be a ban on the use of existing wood or multi-fuel appliances, nor do you need to modify your appliance. Recommendations however are that you should burn only quality dry “Ready to Burn” wood or quality smokeless fuels.


• Do I have to buy Woodsure ready to burn fuel?
No, you can still gather your own unseasoned wood, but must ensure it has had time to season and has a moisture content of no more than 20% before burning.


• Are products going to be specially taxed?
No. There is nothing in the 2019 Clean Air Strategy indicating special taxation of either Ecodesign or non-Ecodesign products.


• Is it true that wood burning is one of the major contributing factors to poor air quality?
It is important to remember that the reported figures out there are including the large proportion of open fires and older stoves (40% nationwide and 70% in London of the polluting particles came from these). In comparison, an Ecodesign stove gives off 90% less particulate emissions than an open fire and 80% less than a 10-year-old non-clean burn stove and form a core part of the Clean Air Strategy.


• What does Ecodesign mean?
Any product bearing the Ecodesign Ready label meets or exceeds forthcoming stringent EU targets for emissions. These products are the next generation of clean burning, low emission fires, and as such have been recognised as a key part of the Clean Air Strategy by DEFRA. Ecodesign stove and fires are being supported by the Mayor of London as a positive move towards improving air quality.


• What does Woodsure mean?
Woodsure is an accreditation scheme for wood log suppliers, using the “Ready to Burn”stamp of approval reassuring purchasers they are dry enough to burn (below 20% moisture).


• Does the legislation affect the sale of open fires and fireplaces?
Open fires and fireplaces will no longer be able to be sold as solid fuel heating appliances after 2022.


• Are there many Ecodesign models to choose from?
Yes – Stovax, Charnwood Jotul and Morso all offer Ecodesign Ready models and we have many of them on display in our showroom.
Click here to see our Ecodesign range


• I live in a smoke control area (Parts of Bath or Bristol). Will anything change?
Currently it is illegal for you to burn wood or house coal on your open fire. This will continue. If you have a stove (or are having one fitted) it must be DEFRA approved. You should only burn dry wood or approved smokeless fuel. After January 2022 in a smokeless zone you will only be able to fit an Ecodesign stove (But at present not all Ecodesign stoves are DEFRA exempt as the manufacturers have not yet tested them for this.) Burning wet or only partially dry wood (greater than 20% moisture) dramatically increases the pollution and particulates going up your chimney into the atmosphere and dramatically decreases the efficiency and heat output from your wood, whatever it is burnt on.


The above information, to the best of our knowledge, is correct at this time March 2020.

are wood burning stoves being banned?